What is embryo donation
Embryo donation is the process by which people who have undergone IVF treatment after having completed their family, donate the surplus frozen embryos to a couple or a single woman who cannot conceive using their own gametes.
In some embryo donation programmes, the donated embryos are created using both donor eggs and donor sperm.
Who is embryo donation recommended for?
Who can be an embryo donor?
What are the screening tests done for the donors?
Embryo donation FAQs
A thorough review of medical, reproductive, surgical, and psychiatric histories.
Laboratory testing to include blood type, antibody screen, thyroid function, and testing for sexually transmitted diseases including HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Syphilis, Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and Cytomegalovirus (CMV).
Recipients must receive implications counselling by a fertility counsellor.
If the recipient is over 45 years old, a more thorough evaluation should be done, including assessment of the heart, liver and kidney functions, and the risk of pregnancy-related diseases. Referral to a pre-conception clinic run by an obstetric consultant may also be advised.
If you require an IVF treatment using embryo donation, the journey will be the same as going through a Frozen Embryo Transfer cycle, except for the screening tests and counselling which form an integral part of the pre-treatment programme for embryo donation.
The endometrium of the recipient will be prepared using a combination of oestrogen and progesterone in advance of the embryo transfer.
Additional medications and adjuvants may be prescribed depending on the individual case, either to enhance the chances of successful embryo implantation and/or to reduce the risk of miscarriage and pregnancy-related diseases.
Patients who consider embryo donation will be given the donors profiles. These include non-identifying details such as physical characteristics (hair and eye colour, height, weight, build, skin colour), ethnicity, blood group, career, education, and fertility history.
Success rates with embryo donation depend on various factors, including the quality of the embryo(s) at the time that they were frozen, the quality of the embryos after thawing, the age of the woman who provided the eggs, the quality of the sperm, the recipient’s medical, fertility and obstetric histories.
Both the embryo donors and the embryo recipient should have implications counseling by a fertility counsellor who can discuss the psychological issues related to the decision to donate and to receive embryos, respectively.
The implications counselling focuses on the emotional, legal, and ethical aspects of embryo donation as well as the prospects of their own child(ren) having siblings within a different family.
The recipient will have the opportunity to discuss the release of donor information and future contact between the donors and the child(ren) conceived through the use of donor embryo treatment.
Depending on the legislation applicable in the country where the embryo donation treatment takes place, the recipients should seek legal advice from a family law firm with established expertise in assisted conception.
Where there is little legal precedent regarding the use of donor embryo(s), the recipient accepts full responsibility for the transferred embryo(s) and resulting child(ren).
The responsibility about any pregnancies and any legal aspects of the child(ren) born through embryo donation treatment lies with the recipient(s).
The recipient should release the assisted conception centre and the fertility professionals involved in the treatment from any and all liabilities about the pregnancy, congenital abnormalities, heritable diseases, and any other complications that may result from the embryo donation treatment.
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